The Death and Life of Great American Cities, by Jane Jacobs. 1992. Vintage Books.
Originally published in 1961, this book is generally credited with initiation of the modern preservationist movement, first in New York City and then across the country. The New York Times Book Review calls it, "Perhaps the most influential single work in the history of town planning."
Changing Places, Rebuilding Community in the Age of Sprawl, by Richard Moe and Carter Wilkie. 1977. Henry Holt and Company, New York.
Richard Moe is president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation and a well known Civil War historian. Carter Wilkie is a former White House speechwriter. Their book details the efforts of communities across the country, large and small, to rebuilt older neighborhoods and main streets.
- Suburban Nation: The Rise of Sprawl and the Decline of the American Dream, by Andres Duany, Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk, Jeff Speck. 2000. North Point Press.
This book calls for a radical re-thinking of the way our cities grow. Andres Duany and Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk are co-founders of the "Congress for the New Urbanism." Duany advised Onondaga County recently as they developed the county's new Settlement Plan.
- The Living City : How America's Cities Are Being Revitalized by Thinking Small in a Big Way, by Roberta Brandes Gratz. 1995. John Wiley & Sons.
Gratz calls her approach "urban husbandry," the care, management and preservation of the built environment nurtured by genuine participatory planning efforts of government, urban planners and average citizens.
- The Geography of Nowhere: The Rise and Decline of America's Man-Made Landscape, by James Howard Kunstler. 1994. Simon and Schuster, New York.
Kunstler traces America's evolution from a nation of main streets and coherent communities to a land where every place is like every other place, where everywhere is nowhere. He draws some examples from his adopted home town, Saratoga Springs, NY.
Further Reading - Syracuse History